Click the star to add/remove an item to/from your individual schedule.
You need to be logged in to avail of this functionality.

Accepted Paper:

Grounding urban nature in place and time: people’s attitudes towards nature in Ziway/Batu Ethiopia.  
Ute Vees (University of Stuttgart)

Paper short abstract:

This paper examines people’s attitudes towards nature and related practices in a medium-sized town in Ethiopia. By grounding nature in place and time it shall open discussion for alternative imaginaries of an African urban future.

Paper long abstract:

The long tradition of seeing the urban as something different to nature has finally been overcome in the 21st century. In the eyes of climate change and environmental crisis sustainable development agendas have started to reintroduce “nature” as part of the urban. This comes in all sorts of, often quite technocratic, understandings where nature is seen as a service, as a solution, or a means of design.

Traditional African conceptions do not make such a division between nature and society. As this research shows, attitudes towards nature are formed by a multitude of cultural, social, and religious values and traditions interlaced with practices of livelihood production and the fulfillment of basic needs. Taking Ziway/Batu, a medium-sized town in the central rift valley in Ethiopia as a case, it shows that daily life routines are grounded in a strong relationship between people and nature. Semi-structured interviews and tracing everyday routines are used to gain insights into attitudes and practices of people living in and around Ziway/Batu.

As an agrarian country that is rapidly urbanizing, Ethiopia has the chance to formulate strategies that appreciate people’s strong attitudes towards nature. Furthermore, localized development goals on the African continent must include cultural conceptions of nature and a complex understanding of how the fulfillment of basic needs of individuals can contradict or support overarching goals.

Panel Urba16
Africa's urban futures and positionalities towards Global Urban Policies
  Session 3 Friday 2 June, 2023, -